Baseball: Five-run seventh inning sends Panthers past Oglethorpe 9-4

Baseball: Five-run seventh inning sends Panthers past Oglethorpe 9-4

ATLANTA, Ga. - James Poropatic's grand slam home run highlighted a five-run seventh inning in LaGrange's 9-4 non-conference win over Oglethorpe on Tuesday at Anderson Field. The Panthers (21-13) have won three straight and eight of their last 10.

The game was tied 4-4 entering the seventh. The Panthers loaded the bases with one out on three walks. Oglethorpe pitching issued seven walks and four hit by pitch in the game, with six of those scoring. Jackson Patrick came home on a passed ball to break the tie. Jacob Gassert was hit by a pitch to re-load the bases. Poropatic followed with his fourth home run of the season and first collegiate grand slam over the left field fence to make it 9-4.

LC had only four hits in the game, with two leaving the park. Gassert's RBI triple in the third inning tied the game 1-1. Patrick broke the tie in the fourth with his first collegiate home run, a three-run shot to left for a 4-1 lead. Oglethorpe (20-11) tied the game with two runs in its half of the fourth and a run in the fifth. The Panthers overcame five errors in the game, leading to two unearned runs.

Andrew Padovano started and went three innings. He allowed three runs, two earned, four hits, and walked a batter. Zach English followed and allowed an unearned run in 2-2/3 innings. Gibson Bittner (5-1) picked up the win with 2-1/3 shutout innings, striking out three and not allowing a hit. It was Bittner's third win in the last five games, two against Oglethorpe. Tanner Chafin retired the Stormy Petrels in order in the ninth.

The Panthers play at Ferrum in a three-game USA South series, starting with a doubleheader Friday and concluding Saturday.